Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving

Waiting for Turkey

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Christmas Markets

We are just 4 days from Thanksgiving, which means the Christmas market season is upon us. Unfortunately, in New York, there's no gluehwein and a relaxed European attitude is no where to be found in pushy NYC-ers. Nevertheless, I thoroughly enjoyed the Union Square market last year and plan to check out others as well this year.

Union Square is in it's 12th year. I bought a number of gifts here last year and enjoyed the hot spiced grape juice (who knew there was such a thing!)

The holiday shops at Bryant Park are in their 4th year. I've heard this market really exudes old world charm. They actually opened on Saturday.

Finally, there are holiday shops at Columbus Circle, which apparently comes complete with a German booth!

Know of any other holiday gems in the city?

The awesome store I visited this weekend was Sahadis on Atlantic Ave in Brooklyn. I found fantastic (and inexpensive) goodies such as whole cloves (see pict above), hummus and pistachios. At 3pm on a Saturday, the store was HOPPING. Will definitely be back. Click here for an article in today's paper about Sadahis and other awesome stores on Atlantic.


I have it from a very reliable source that Rochester, Michigan will host a traditional Christmas market this year. Check out the press release. Grab a glass of gluehwein (apparently they'll have the real deal) and then head right over to Christmas Greens stand for something made by Rochester's coolest Granny:-)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Berlin in Lights

Homesick for Berlin? Okay, maybe that's only me.

In anycase, this is the month to be in New York if you love Berlin. Carnegie Hall and a number of other organizations are hosting Berlin In Lights , a collection of concerts, discussions and exhibits about the Hauptstadt.

This post is a bit late because the concerts end this weekend. But some of the coolest exhibits will be open at least until the end of the year.

I went to the opening of an exhibit on Berlin and NYC architecture last week. The opening was wonderfully German--German music, wine and, well, Germans. I intend to go back to really look at the photos and better understand the comparisons. There are also photos of the Berlin Hauptbahnhof at the German consulate (headed there on Friday) and New Photography from Berlin at the Goethe Institute. Best of all, admission to all of the exhibits still running is kostenlos.

On the music front, the local public radio station broadcast the Carnegie Hall performances of the Berlin Philharmonic, Ute Lemper and even has a Berlin blog (good idea;-))

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


Having lived in New York for almost a year now, I’ve picked up quite a bit of new terminology and find that I still learn more every day.

I believe I’ve already mentioned DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass), BoCoCa (Boerum Hill, Cobble Hill, Carroll Gardens), SoBro (South Bronx) and FiDi (Financial District).

Over the weekend, I read about RAMBO (Right At the Manhattan Bridge Overpass) and Flattery (Flatbush Ave and Tillary). According to one website, RAMBO is not a new term; Flattery seems a bit more new.

Reading the NY tabloids also requires one to speak NYese. Just as an example: “Hill Says Brit Knows Nothing about Pols.” The DC part of me says that headline means “Politicans on Capitol Hill say a British person knows nothing about opinions polls” (perhaps a typo). A New Yorker would know that headline says “Hillary Clinton says Brittany Spears knows nothing about politicians.”

Finally, I just heard the term “locavore" this morning. Apparently it means someone who chooses to only eat locally grown/raised food. I am going to think of myself as a pescatarian recreational locavore.

Friday, November 09, 2007


From midtown to Ft. Greene, you never know what you'll see. Here are some shots I've taken recently.


Monday, November 05, 2007

NYC Marathon

I watched the marathon in Brooklyn yesterday--around mile 8. I was amazed at how international the runners were. France and Italy shirts were plentiful and I made sure to cheer for the German and Brit runners too! Compared with watching the last few hundred yards of the Boston Marathon, watching NYC at the beginning meant that there were no pukers and no one passed out. That said, both Matt and I were a bit dizzy after watching the sea of runners undulate like a wave down the street. I was super impressed with how many people turned out to cheer.

My favorite shirt was worn by a German (auf Deutsch): "The New York City Marathon, like a vacation but with pain." We missed seeing Lance and Katie Holmes, but did see 2 Sponge Bob Square Pants, a penguin, a banana, a guy dressed up in the Bavarian flag and one guy running in lederhosen. We also saw quite a few runners with tall socks. Matt says that he'd sport long socks if he ever ran a marathon (OMG!)

Here are a couple pictures. The first is of the lead pack of men. The second shows the crowd. The people in the picture were predicted to run the race in around 4 hours.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Just a run in the park

Winds from Hurricane Noel were starting to whip, but I felt a calm excitement as I approached Central Park at 6:45am. The US men’s Olympic trials for the marathon was held in the Park today and there was no way I was going to miss it.

A field of 147 lined up at Rockefeller Center at 7:35am and just over 2 hours later they would all be finished. The top three would go on to Beijing and the rest would have to look to London in 2012.

From the grandstand, I was able to see the runners 5 times. Michael Wardian led the pack when everyone passed the first time, but in laps 2 and 3 Hall, Ritzenhein, Meb, Browne and Abdi were leading. At mile 17, Hall (who was only running his second marathon) made his move and never looked back. He was strong the rest of the way, ran a 2:09:02 and beat Ritzenhein by more than one minute. Most excitingly, Brian Sell, who trains with Hansons in Rochester, MI, grabbed the #3 spot. Go USA!

As I left the Park, I was jazzed—a runner’s high through osmosis. But it wasn’t until I got back into the subway—the dark, dingy subway with bla people, that I fully realized why it’s so wonderful to go to a race. Watching the winner cross the finish line is fun, but it is really the positive attitude of the runners and spectators that makes the experience!

The best part of this weekend is that the positiveness continues tomorrow with the 37th running of the New York City Marathon! I’ll be cheering on the runners on Lafayette Ave in Brooklyn. I can’t wait!

The tragic epilogue is that Ryan Shay died during the race around mile 5. God bless him and his family.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Halloween Parade

In short, it was a bust...not because it wasn't well attended but because it was SO well attended. Matt and I arrived on 6th Ave around 6:40 (7pm start) and the crowd was already 2-3 deep. We stood on the curb to give me a few extra inches but by the time it rolled around to 7:30pm, nothing had started, the crowd was now 8-10 deep and I couldn't see the street, we decided that it was time to go watch it on the local NYC television station. We later heard that there were 50,000 paraders and 2 million spectators!

Next year, I would either a. get there even earlier and bring a chair or b. dress up and walk in the parade!

It was fun to walk through Greenwich Village in any case and see the spectacular brownstones decorated with pumpkins, lights and cobwebs. Very Halloween! Plus the subways were in no short supply of costumed New Yorkers who were fun to observe--Brittany Spears with a baby hanging off her, Larry Craig complete with bathroom stall and a man dressed as a robotic woman with metallic boobs were among my favorites! We also saw a skeleton rollerskating down 2nd Ave. It was occasionally difficult to determine whether people were dressed in costume or's New York, what more can you say!